(Bloomberg) -- The Transportation Security Administration is planning to begin closing a handful of security checkpoints as soon as this weekend in response to staffing shortages triggered by a partial U.S. government shutdown entering its third week.
Miami International Airport is planning on closing one of its concourses starting Saturday afternoon and will move flights to other gates, according to a statement by the airport. Concourse G will be closed after 1 p.m. through Monday.
More than 51,000 TSA security officers have been working without pay since Dec. 22 and missed their first paycheck on Friday. On Thursday, the agency saw an increase in employees calling in sick of 55 percent, from 3.3 percent a year ago to 5.1, spokesman Michael Bilello said in an email.
“In an effort to optimize resources without degrading screening and security effectiveness, where it is feasible, TSA is working with key stakeholders and industry partners to explore efforts to consolidate officers and operations,” Bilello said in a tweet.
United Continental Holdings Inc. has some flights at Concourse G in Miami where the security line will be closed. “We will work to ensure we do everything we can for our customers and we do not expect any operational impact,” said Frank Benenati, a United spokesman.
TSA hasn’t heard of any other airport planning on closures like those in Miami, Bilello said.
--With assistance from Mary Schlangenstein and Justin Bachman.
To contact the reporter on this story: Alan Levin in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jon Morgan at email@example.com, Elizabeth Wasserman, Susan Warren
©2019 Bloomberg L.P.